In early 2019, we were introduced to Bob the Fisherman and his world in the VR game A Fisherman’s Tale, a lighthouse within a lighthouse within a lighthouse. It boiled down to being a complex and charming escape room-style game with some interesting characters. So when Another Fisherman’s Tale was announced, I was expecting another escape room puzzle based on a single location with a loose narrative and a more significant focus on interaction in the environment. I have never been happier to be wrong.
Another Fisherman’s Tale follows May, the titular fisherman’s daughter, as she packs up her fathers’ old models from the basement of her family’s house. With her mother upstairs, May goes through the memories of her father’s adventures, or at least his version of adventures. What follows is roughly 3-4 hours of these intense, thought-provoking, mind-bending puzzles—broken up into multiple chapters, with each chapter bringing in a new level.
To access these levels, May needs to open boxes and physically start putting these models together, something that, within the confines of VR, really brings out that sense of immersion. The story told within these models is incredibly charming, heartwarming, and, at times, devastating. Both Bob and May’s stories are intertwined in Another Fisherman’s Tale as she learns the true meaning behind Bob’s tales is a story that is surprisingly impactful and, at times, so imaginative, unique, and fun that I couldn’t help but become fully invested in both storylines.
“Both Bob and May’s stories are intertwined in Another Fisherman’s Tale…”
If there were one standout, it would easily be chapter 4. This is when there is this overarching musical interlude that goes through an entire story arc itself, beginning so hopeful and filled with joy, then comes the turmoil and ends on a dower but bridging note, bringing understanding to both of our characters.
Then there is the storyline of May coming to the realization that her mother is getting to an age where she is having difficulty keeping track of her own memory and not being able to care for herself. Without going into too much more detail, this is a story that, through the power of VR, is incredibly well told and, by putting us in the shoes of both May and Bob, hits home in all the right ways.
Having to interact with the models, move around the basement, and put the pieces together feels smooth and concise. When you take over Bob in these levels, things get weird in the best ways. Because you embody this mannequin version of Bob, we can individually launch each hand separately to move around on its own, which is a little awkward at first. Still, once you drive this disembodied hand around for a bit, you will quickly become familiar with it.
Not only can you launch your individual hands and mix and replace your hands with hooks and claws, but you are also given the ability to launch your head to get better angles on puzzles. This also allows you to control your body independently. This is by far the hardest to handle, but I never found that to be a hindrance, only pure entertainment. You will use these tools to send your hands through tight spaces your body can’t go or to place your head on a switch and walk your body through just a few examples.
“…when playing Another Fisherman’s Tale, there is a general sense of chill in its vibe.”
But nothing ever feels rushed here because when playing Another Fisherman’s Tale, there is a general sense of chill in its vibe. There are only a few sections where you’re against the clock. Other than that, it’s a very at-your-own-speed kind of game, and that’s a good thing because there are times when your objectives can be a little vague, but thankfully it doesn’t take very long for Bob to chime in with a hint of two to get you on your way.
With each new level, the mechanics evolve so that you will constantly be learning new ways to utilize Bob’s body intuitively. In a medium that is usually filled with awkward controls or how the controls perceive your movements, I found almost none of that present in Another Fisherman’s Tale.
Ultimately, Another Fisherman’s Tale is easily one of the only must-play PSVR 2 titles besides Resident Evil Village. The journey we go on is one that has real growth, where we can genuinely get engrained in this storybook-like world. All while solving puzzles in wildly different locals and having some of the funniest moments in gaming this year so far, it has reinvigorated my love for VR.